SEC Stalls Again on Latest ETF Approval Decision

SEC New York Stock Exchange ETF bitcoin exchange traded fund cryptocurrency

The Securities and Exchange Commission has again postponed its decision to approve or reject proposals for a bitcoin exchange traded fund, after the regulator was expected to issue a ruling this week.

The Bitwise ETF (exchange traded fund) proposals were filed with the New York Stock Exchange back in January, and have been awaiting approval from regulators before proceeding to a full listing.

In documents published this week, the regulator said it was delaying the ruling in order to solicit further comments, as part of its ongoing consultations with stakeholders into cryptocurrency ETFs.

It follows from a decision back in March to delay the ruling until May, with rulings on both Bitwise and separate VanEck/SolidX ETF proposals deferred from that date.

The ruling is the latest blow to those eagerly anticipating a bitcoin ETF. To date, the regulator has yet to green-light any of the proposals submitted for a bitcoin ETF, despite a widely held view this is an inevitability.

Cryptocurrency ETFs are regarded as an investment vehicle with appeal for institutional investors, many of whom are interested in investing in cryptocurrency without holding or storing digital assets themselves.

An ETF, if approved, would be expected to contribute significant liquidity to crypto markets, as well as propelling the sector further toward the financial mainstream.

Despite the repeated rejections to date, often around concerns about regulation and the transparency of crypto markets, further proposals are lined up to be filed in the near future.

ETF proposals from Crypto Crescent Asset Management are expected to be next, which would give investors exposure to both BTC and ETH, though official proposals have yet to be filed for regulatory approval.

The deferred ruling means there will now be a further five-week period for consultation before the Securities and Exchange Commission delivers its final ruling.

While it is not yet known whether the regulator is likely to approve the proposals, stakeholders in the cryptocurrency sector will now have to wait a bit longer in the hope the SEC is ready to embrace the first cryptocurrency ETF.